Good­man Re­bounds With Sta­tion

McDonald County Press - - PROTECT & SERVE - Sally Car­roll

As Good­man fire of­fi­cials set­tle into their new sta­tion on East Rus­sell Street, they re­flect that it’s been a ban­ner year.

Fire­fight­ers have strug­gled to con­sol­i­date op­er­a­tions into a new sta­tion since a tor­nado, last year, de­stroyed two fire sta­tions.

The group has re­bounded, how­ever, and just re­cently fin­ished mov­ing into a build­ing not far away from the dev­as­tated site.

Re­cov­ery from last year’s tor­nado is just about com­plete, and fire­fight­ers are ex­cited to ser­vice neigh­bors from a fa­cil­ity which seems to be the per­fect fit. A tor­nado in April 2017 de­stroyed two fire sta­tions lo­cated across from each other, but vol­un­teers re­cently have set­tled into a new fa­cil­ity, which fea­tures 8,400 square feet, said Fire Chief Keith Estes.

The sta­tion — com­prised of two build­ings — fea­tures room for all fire en­gines, equip­ment, plus meet­ing rooms, of­fice and re­strooms. The cen­tral lo­ca­tion en­ables fire­fight­ers to re­spond to all fires in town.

In ad­di­tion, all op­er­a­tions and stor­age of all fire re­sponse ve­hi­cles are now com­plete. Since the tor­nado, fire of­fi­cials had housed some of their equip­ment at Choice Pup­pies.

The Good­man Area Fire Pro­tec­tion Board paid $305,000, which in­cluded the two build­ings, the prop­erty and all the util­i­ties, Estes said.

In­sur­ance money — a set­tle­ment from the tor­nadic de­struc­tion — and re­serve funds were uti­lized for the pur­chase, Estes said. No tax in­creases were put into place for the new fa­cil­ity, he added.

With the move to a new sta­tion com­plete, fire vol­un­teers an­tic­i­pate more train­ing in the fu­ture. Fire­fight­ers now can uti­lize the sta­tion on East Rus­sell, a re­cently com­pleted sta­tion at Split­log and one on Sor­rel Road.

Other suc­cesses this year in­clude a grant from the Mis­souri De­part­ment of Con­ser­va­tion and the U.S. For­est Ser­vice, Vol­un­teer As­sis­tance Pro­gram.

The Vol­un­teer Fire As­sis­tance Grant awards up to $4,000 to help with the pur­chase of gear and equip­ment, aid­ing fire de­part­ments to sup­press wild­fires.

Fire de­part­ments can use the grant to pur­chase per­sonal pro­tec­tive gear, com­mu­ni­ca­tions equip­ment and wild­fire sup­pres­sion equip­ment.

The fire pro­tec­tion dis­trict was es­tab­lished in 2005 by the vote of Good­man res­i­dents. The city of Good­man pre­vi­ously had op­er­ated a fire de­part­ment for years, but of­fi­cials be­lieved the es­tab­lish­ment and op­er­a­tion of a fire dis­trict would be more eco­nom­i­cally fea­si­ble. With the change, the city gave fire­fight­ing equip­ment to the dis­trict.

To­day, the de­part­ment op­er­ates with funds from in­come taxes and cov­ers 96 square miles with the help of ded­i­cated vol­un­teers. All po­si­tions, in­clud­ing the fire chief, are non-paid.

SALLY CAR­ROLL/MCDON­ALD COUNTY PRESS

The Good­man Area Fire Pro­tec­tion Dis­trict re­cently moved into a new fire sta­tion on East Rus­sell Street in Good­man. Fire­fight­ers have re­bounded af­ter a tor­nado last year de­stroyed their main fa­cil­i­ties. The team in­cludes Fire Chief Keith Estes and fire­fight­ers Jared Mack­all, Har­vey May­han, David Todd, Clay Sex­son, Bud Rich­mond, Justin Sell­ers, Di­ana Rich­mond, Ash­ley Carter, Kevin Carter, Keith Hol­loway, Bud Gil­more and Kent Hart­man.

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